Saturn Receives Approval for Sale

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From WTVG-TV ABC 13: GM is proceeding to the next step with respect to the sale of Saturn. The U.S. Treasury has approved GM's sale or spinoff of the Saturn brand after results of a feasibility study were presented. GM expects to name an advisor to the sale or spinoff transaction from an outside investment bank this week. During the feasibility study there were four criteria to be met: get an OEM with a global presence, find a source of a dealer floorplan credit line, investment capital available, and a feasible company which is profitable. These were all met. According to Associated Press reports the top executive of General Motors' Saturn brand said the company most likely will sell the brand by August of this year and no later than the end of this year, nearly two years faster than previously announced. GM will continue to produce Saturn vehicles through the end of 2009 and may manufacture vehicles for the new owner on a contract basis as late as the end of 2011, Lajdziak said.

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Ion Replacement to be Imported

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Automotive News reported early this morning that General Motors plans to import the Opel Astra from Europe to replace the current Saturn Ion sedan and quad coupe late next year. While speculation about this plan has long been rumored, unnamed sources within both GM and Opel reportedly have recently confirmed it to Automotive News.